World Mental Health Day: public health team encourages everyone to look after their mental health and wellbeing
This year’s World Mental Health Day, today (Saturday 10 October 2020), comes at a time when our daily lives have changed considerably as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
To mark the day we want to remind people that we have a host of mental health resources to help support people’s mental health and wellbeing, through and beyond coronavirus.
The resources aim to help reduce loneliness and isolation, and provide easy access to mental health support, to help people, so that problems don’t escalate.
- Dedicated coronavirus mental health pages – containing helpful links to local services and further sources of information
- Looking after your mental health during coronavirus booklet – an online information pack providing details of local support and online resources for managing wellbeing, including tips for self-isolation, a children’s 14-day activity coronavirus challenge, and helping to manage coronavirus anxiety.
- Guidance for those who have been bereaved by COVID-19 – An information booklet for those who have been newly bereaved by COVID-19.
- New Bereavement Support service– to support those who are experiencing and suffering from bereavement and loss during the pandemic. Call 0345 678 9028 for further information and support.
- Directory of organisations offering mental health and wellbeing support – a directory of national and local mental health and wellbeing organisations.
- Advice and support for those with suicidal thoughts – our online ZCards have been created to help people who are struggling with day to day life, to the right support quickly.
- TogetherAll – is a new online community for young people and adults across Shropshire that offers confidential and free access and support for those with anxiety, depression and other common mental health issues. The 24/7 online support service is a collaboration between Shropshire Council’s public health team and Togetherall, a leading online mental health service that provides over 20 million people throughout the UK, Canada and New Zealand access to community and professional support.
- Public Health England’s Better Health Every Mind Matters have launched a new campaign to support young people between the ages of 13 and 18 and Parents and carers of children and young people (aged 5-18, with a focus on 5-12s). Particularly those who have been more negatively impacted by coronavirus.
Rachel Robinson, Shropshire Council’s director of public health, said:
“The coronavirus pandemic has caused widespread life changes for all of us and in different ways. It is normal to feel anxious, stressed, worried, sad, bored, lonely or frustrated, and is OK to feel this way. However, there are lots of things we can do to support us all, during these challenging times.
“In support of World Mental Health Day this weekend, I’d like to highlight the many local resources our public health team and partners have created. I would encourage anyone who maybe feeling low, or needs some advice to support their mental health and wellbeing, to utilise these great resources.
“The past several months have been hard on everyone, including our kids. I’m really pleased to see that The Better Health – Every Mind Matters campaign has introduced some new resources that can help you find what’s right for your children – whether it’s listening to them talk about the challenges they’re facing or helping them develop skills to cope with their emotions.”
Ellen, 18, now a former sixth-form student at Haberdashers’ Adams Grammar School, talks about the impact of coronavirus and its effect on her life and future. You can view Ellen’s story here.
For local advice and support during the pandemic visit our website at www.shropshire.gov.uk/coronavirus.
Every Mind Matters
Research reveals that the coronavirus outbreak has caused an increase in anxiety in young people1, and more than a third of children report being more worried, sad and stressed than before lockdown.
Public Health England’s Every Mind Matters offers a range of resources that help spot the signs of common mental health concerns, offers practical self-care tips and guidance and, importantly, explains when to seek further support. It also has a free NHS-approved online tool the Every Mind Matters Your Mind Plan.
This free online resource helps people take simple steps to look after their mental health, improve their mental wellbeing and support others too.
To help support World Mental Health Day Public Health England have created new marketing materials that signpost to Every Mind Matters and the range of resources they have available.
The campaign provides tips and advice to help parents and carers support children and young people when coping with stressors including starting new schools or colleges and building relationships with friends again.
Healthwatch Shropshire survey
During April and May 2020 Healthwatch Shropshire asked the people of Shropshire about how they were being affected by the pandemic, the impact on their wellbeing, how they were finding useful information, how they were being supported, what was helping them to cope and how their experience of health and social care services was being affected.
Over 550 people contacted them and now the final report is out.
The key messages were:
- An average of 93% of people said they had found it easy to find clear and understandable information about how to keep themselves and others safe.
- Key workers and people working during the pandemic reported a greater impact on their mental health and wellbeing than those not working.
- Overall, 40% of people said that their healthcare had been affected by the pandemic: this figure rose to 69% for those people with a disability.
- On average 10% of people using social care services said that their care had been affected by the pandemic; the highest figure being in May (16%).
- The main coping strategies people used included focusing on the positives, finding a new appreciation for their surroundings, staying active, getting outside, and maintaining contact with family and friends and wider support networks.
1 Levita L, Gibson Miller J, Hartman TK, Murphy J, Shevlin M, McBride O, and others. Report 1: Initial research findings on the impact of COVID-19 on the well-being of young people aged 13 to 24 in the UK. Non-representative sample of 2,000 children and young people aged 13 to 24, collected 21 to 29 April 2020 2 Barna
2 Barnardo’s. Generation lockdown: a third of children and young people experience increased mental health difficulties. 2020. [Sample of 4,283 young people aged 8-24, weighted to be representative of all -24 year olds, GB. Collected 15 May-2 June 2020.]